The raison d’être of the R9s, the rear camera is where the magic is at. It is one of the few examples, even across mainline flagships with an F/1.7 aperture that offers better depth of field when taking snaps and better snaps under low light. This frames a 16-MP camera with a new IMX398 sensor that has been custom sourced and co-developed with Sony and also integrates Dual Pixel phase detection autofocus tech, a feature culled from high end full frame cameras to offer faster and more accurate autofocus acquisition. Added to this are an array of modes including the obligatory time lapse and panorama mode as well as a feature popular with narcissists: a beauty mode. With it, you’re able to dial how fair or rosy your complexion is as well as how intense the effect is along with automatic skin smoothening to remove wrinkles and the like. The good part here is that it’s able to work on both the rear and the front camera as well. The phone also has a double exposure mode for artsy shots, a 10 second:1 time lapse mode and the ability to cobble together short animated GIFs.
The bundled expert mode is nested somewhat deep in the menus but offers extensive control over white balance, exposure, ISO, shutter speed and focus along with an automatic spirit level to see if your shot is kilted off or not.
On auto mode, the phone yields excellent shots for its price range under all but the most challenging conditions. The rear camera offers delightful bokeh and plenty of detail in snaps with pretty good colour accuracy. Autofocus is swift and sure as well. Night shots are handled well too and the host of filters as well as manual mode offers plenty of creative options. The rear camera also has the ability to capture 2160P@30fps video though this quickly fills out the onboard storage. Videos are generally good with great detail even under low light conditions though the lack of optical image stabilisation means you’ll need a fairly steady hand or a gimbal to get best results. The inability to tweak the colour settings of the display may mean that those deadset on specific settings may feel somewhat irked but by and large, the R9s has a highly capable rear camera and one of the best in its price range.
The front camera is also has a 16-MP sensor with an F/2.0 aperture for self portrait shots. It also has a nifty feature that flashes the display white to act as an ersatz flash. Snaps from the front proved serviceable and the phone is also able to capture 1080P footage too. It’s a solid performer though the show stopper is still the R9s’ rear camera.
|Page 3||Price, Battery & Conclusion|